Monday, June 20, 2016

The Art of Strategy and Verizon in 2011

The Art of Strategy and Verizon in 2011

Under the framework described in the article, "Bringing Science to the Art of Strategy," I analyzed how Verizon started as a survivor of the regulated monopoly known as Bell System to the company it is today. The article, "Transforming Verizon: A Platform of Change," discusses how Verizon had to change its culture to move forward.  Prior to 2011, Verizon was a company of two faces.  It held the regulatory legacy of the telecommunications industry mired in the formerly monopolistic wireline business.  It was known for being slower, more bureaucratic and less customer-centric.  The other wireless face was more flexible, faster and more entrepreneurial.

The two sides unfortunately didn't play well with each other.  As the revenue mix changed from mostly wireline revenue in 2001 to mostly wireless revenue by 2010, the divide between the two grew.  The wireline business was quickly dying.  Verizon addressed this by building FiOS, a fiber-optic broadband network connecting directly to customers' homes.  The problem was how the company would use the innovation across the enterprise to benefit one Verizon.  Verizon's COO McAdam launched his vision of One Verizon.  He rolled out a company-wide "credo" statement.  He even followed up with an employee survey to validate the rollout's effectiveness.  98 percent were aware of the credo, 96 percent said they were accountable for demonstrating it in their daily work, and 91 percent believed the credo will deliver superior customer service.  The company even established, "Credo Awards" to drive home its new ethos.  McAdam was able to identify the problem and made intentional choices to remove barriers.  He believed that wireless and wireline employees would learn how to collaborate better if the emphasis was more on action or process.  

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